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Noah Webster’s 1828 Dictionary - Contents
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    AUGMENTER, n. He that augments.

    AUGMENTING, ppr. Increasing; enlarging.

    AUGUR, n. [L. augur. The first syllable is from avis, a fowl; but the meaning and origin of the last syllable are not obvious.]

    1. Among the Romans, an officer whose duty was to foretell future events by the singing, chattering, flight and feeding of birds. There was a college or community of augers, originally three in number, and afterwards nine, four patricians, and five plebeians. They bore a staff or wand, and were held in great respect.NWAD AUGUR.2

    2. One who pretends to foretell future events by omens.NWAD AUGUR.3

    We all know that augur cannot look at augur without laughing.NWAD AUGUR.4

    AUGUR, v.i. To guess; to conjecture by signs or omens; to prognosticate.

    AUGUR, v.t. To predict or foretell; as, to augur ill success.

    AUGURAL, a. [L. auguralis.] Pertaining to an augur, or to prediction by the appearance of birds. The Romans had their augural staff and augural books.

    AUGURATE, v.i. To judge by augury; to predict. [Little used.]

    AUGURATION, n. The practice of augury, or the foretelling of events by the chattering and flight of birds. It may be used for prediction by other signs and omens.

    AUGURED, pp. Conjectured by omens; prognosticated.

    AUGURER, n. An augur. [Not legitimate.]

    AUGURIAL, a. Relating to augurs.

    AUGURIZE, v.t. To augur. [Not in use.]

    AUGUROUS, a. Predicting; foretelling; foreboding.

    AUGURY, n. [L. augurium.]

    1. The art or practice of foretelling events by the flight or chattering of birds.NWAD AUGURY.2

    2. An omen; prediction; prognostication.NWAD AUGURY.3

    AUGUST, a. [L. augustus. The first syllable of this word is probably from the root of augeo, or of awe.]

    Grand; magnificent; majestic; impressing awe; inspiring reverence.NWAD AUGUST.2

    The Trojan chief appeared, august in visage.NWAD AUGUST.3

    It is related that this epithet was first conferred by the Roman senate upon Octavius, after confirming him in the sovereign power.NWAD AUGUST.4

    AUGUST, n. The eighth month of the year, containing thirty-one days. The old Roman name was Sextilis, the sixth month from March, the month in which the primitive Romans, as well as Jews, began the year. The name was changed to August in honor of the Emperor Octavius Augustus, on account of his victories, and his entering on his first consulate in that month.

    AUGUSTAN, a.

    1. Pertaining to Augustus; as the Augustan age.NWAD AUGUSTAN.2

    2. The Augustan confession, drawn up at Augusta or Augsburg, by Luther and Melancthon, in 1530, contains the principles of the protestants, and their reasons for separating from the Romish church.NWAD AUGUSTAN.3

    AUGUSTINIANS, n. Those divines, who from St. Augustin, maintain that grace is effectual from its nature, absolutely and morally, not relatively and gradually.

    AUGUSTINS, AUGUSTINIANS, n. An order of monks, so called from St. Augustin. They originally were hermits, and called Austin friars. They were congregated into one body by Pope Alexander IV., under Lanfranc, in 1256. They clothe in black, and make one of the four orders of mendicants.

    AUGUSTNESS, n. Dignity of mien; grandeur; magnificence.

    AUK, n. [contracted from Alca.] The alca, a genus of aquatic fowls, of the order of ansers, including the northern penguin or great auk, the little auk or black and white diver, the puffin, etc.

    AULARIAN, n. [L. aula, a hall.] At oxford, the member of a hall, distinguished from a collegian.

    AULETIC, a. [Gr. from a pipe.]

    Pertaining to pipes or to a pipe. [Little used.]NWAD AULETIC.2

    AULIC, a. [L. audicus, from aula, a hall, court or palace; Gr.]

    Pertaining to a royal court. The epithet is probably confined to the German Empire, where it is used to designate certain courts or officers composing the courts. The aulic council is composed of a president, who is a catholic, a vice-chancellor and eighteen counsellors, nine of whom are protestants, and nine catholics. They always follow the Emperor’s court, and decide without an appeal. This council ceases at the death of the Emperor.NWAD AULIC.2

    The Aulic, in some European universities, is an act of a young divine, on being admitted a doctor of divinity. It begins by a harangue of the chancellor addressed to the young doctor, after which he receives the cap and presides at the Aulic or disputation.NWAD AULIC.3

    AUMAIL, v.t. To figure or variegate. [Not used.]

    AUMBRY. [See Ambry.]

    AUME, n. A dutch measure for Rhenish wine, containing 40 gallons.

    AUNE, n. [A contraction of aulne, ulna.]

    A French cloth measure, but of different lengths in different parts of the country. At Rouen, it is an Eng. ell; at Calais, 1.52; at Lyons, 1.061; at Paris, 0.95.NWAD AUNE.2

    AUNT, n. [L. amita, contracted.]

    The sister of one’s father or mother, correlative to nephew or niece.NWAD AUNT.2

    AURA, n. [L. from Heb. a stream; Gr. See Air.]

    Literally, a breeze, or gentle current of air, but used by English writers for a stream of fine particles flowing from a body, as effluvia, aroma, or odor; an exhalation.NWAD AURA.2

    AURATE, n. [Supposed to be from aurum, gold.]

    A sort of pear.NWAD AURATE.2

    AURATE, n. [L. aurum, gold; Heb. light fire, and to shine, from its color.]

    A combination of the oxyd of gold with a base; as aurate of potash.NWAD AURATE.4

    AURATED, a. Resembling gold.

    AURELIA, n. [from aurum, or aur, gold, from its color. See Chrysalis.]

    In natural history, the nymph or chrysalis of an insect; or the form of an animal, like a worm or maggot, covered with a hardish pellicle, and in a state of seeming insensibility. From this state, it changes to a moth, butterfly or other winged insect.NWAD AURELIA.2

    AURELIAN, a. Like or pertaining to the aurelia.

    AURIC, a. [from aurum, gold.] Pertaining to gold. The auric acid is a saturated combination of gold and oxygen.

    AURICLE, n. [L. auricula, dim. from auris, the ear.]

    1. The external ear, or that part which is prominent from the heat.NWAD AURICLE.2

    2. The auricles of the heart are two muscular bags, situated at the base, serving as diverticula for the blood, during the diastole. They resemble the auricle of the ear, and cover the ventricles of the heart, like caps. Their systole of the heart, and vice versa. They receive the blood from the veins, and communicate it to the ventricles.NWAD AURICLE.3

    AURICULA, n. That species of primrose, called, from the shape of its leaves, bear’s ear.

    AURICULAR, a. [from L. auricula, the ear.]

    1. Pertaining to the ear; within the sense of hearing; told in the ear; as auricular confession.NWAD AURICULAR.2

    2. Recognized by the ear; known by the sense of hearing; as auricular evidence.NWAD AURICULAR.3

    3. Traditional; known by report; as auricular traditions.NWAD AURICULAR.4

    AURICULARLY, adv. In a secret manner; by way of whisper, or voice addressed to the ear.

    AURICULATE, a. Shaped like the ear.

    AURICULATED, a. Having large or elongated ears; as the auriculated vulture.

    AURIFEROUS, a. [L. aurifer, from aurum, gold, and fero, to produce.]

    That yields or produces gold; as auriferous sands or streams.NWAD AURIFEROUS.2

    AURIGA, n. [L. of aurea, orea, a head-stall, a bridle, and rego, to govern or manage.]

    Literally, the director of a car, or wagon.NWAD AURIGA.2

    1. In astronomy, the wagoner, a constellation in the northern hemisphere, consisting of 23 stars, according to Tycho; 40, according to Hevelius; and 68, in the British catalogue.NWAD AURIGA.3

    2. The fourth lobe of the liver; also a bandage for the sides.NWAD AURIGA.4

    AURIGATION, n. [L. auriga.] The act or practice of driving horses harnessed to carriages.

    AURIPIGMENTUM. [See Orpiment.]

    AURISCALP, n. [L. auris, ear, and scalpo, to scrape.]

    An instrument to clean the ears; used also in operations of surgery on the ear.NWAD AURISCALP.2

    AURIST, n. [L. auris, ear.] One skilled in disorders of the ear, or who professes to cure them.

    AUROCHS, n. A species of ox, whose bones are found in gravel and alluvial soil.

    AURORA, n. [L. aurora; Heb. light and to raise.]

    1. The rising light of the morning; the dawn of day, or morning twilight.NWAD AURORA.2

    2. The goddess of the morning, or twilight deified by fancy. The poets represented her as rising out of the ocean, in a chariot, with rosy fingers dropping gentle dew.NWAD AURORA.3

    3. A species of crowfoot.NWAD AURORA.4

    Aurora Borealis, or lumen boreale; northern twilight. This species of light usually appears in streams, ascending towards the zenith from a dusky line a few degrees above the horizon. sometimes it assumes a wavy appearance, as in America, in March 1782, when it overspread the whole hemisphere. Sometimes it appears in detached places; at other times, it almost covers the hemisphere. As the streams of light have a tremulous motion, they are called, in the Shetland isles, merry dancers. They assume all shapes, and a variety of colors, from a pale red or yellow to a deep red or blood color; and in the northern latitudes, serve to illuminate the earth and cheer the gloom of long winter nights. This light is sometimes near the earth. It is said to have been seen between the spectator and a distant mountain.NWAD AURORA.5

    AURORAL, a. Belonging to the aurora, or to the northern lights; resembling the twilight.

    ARUM, n. [L. See Aurate.] Gold.

    Aurum fulminans, fulminating gold, is gold dissolved in aqua-regia or nitro-muriatic acid, and precipitated by volatile alkali. This precipitate is of a brown yellow, or orange color, and when exposed to a moderate heat, detonizes with considerable noise. It is a compound of the oxyd of gold and ammonia.NWAD ARUM.2

    Aurum mosaicum, or musivum, a sparkling gold-colored substance, from an amalgam of quick-silver and tin, mixed with sulphur and sal ammoniac, set to sublime. The mercury and part of the sulphur unite into a cinnabar, which sublimes with the salammoniac, and leaves the aurum mosaicum at the bottom. It is a sulphuret of tin, and is used as a pigment.NWAD ARUM.3

    AUSCULTATION, n. [L. from antiq. ause, Gr. the ear, and cultus, from colo, to use or exercise.]

    1. The act of listening, or hearkening to.NWAD AUSCULTATION.2

    2. In medicine, a method of distinguishing diseases, particularly in the thorax, by observing the sounds in the part, generally by means of a tube applied to the surface.NWAD AUSCULTATION.3

    AUSPICATE, v.t. [L. asupicor.]

    1. To give a favorable turn to; a sense taken from the Roman practice of taking the auspicium, or inspection of birds, before they undertook any important business.NWAD AUSPICATE.2

    2. To foreshow.NWAD AUSPICATE.3

    3. To begin.NWAD AUSPICATE.4

    AUSPICE, AUSPICES, n. [L. auspicium, of avis, a bird, and specio, to inspect.]

    1. The omens of an undertaking, drawn from birds; the same as augury, which see.NWAD AUSPICE.2

    2. Protection; favor shown; patronage; influence. In this sense the word is generally plural auspices.NWAD AUSPICE.3

    AUSPICIOUS, a. [See Auspice.]

    1. Having omens of success, or favorable appearances; as an auspicious beginning.NWAD AUSPICIOUS.2

    2. Prosperous; fortunate; applied to persons; as auspicious chief.NWAD AUSPICIOUS.3

    3. Favorable; kind; propitious; applied to persons or things; as an auspicious mistress.NWAD AUSPICIOUS.4

    AUSPICIOUSLY, adv. With favorable omens; happily; prosperously; favorably; propitiously.

    AUSPICIOUSNESS, n. A state of fair promise; prosperity.

    AUSTER, n. [L.] The south wind.

    AUSTERE, a. [L. Austerus.]

    1. Severe; harsh; rigid; stern; applied to persons; as an austere master; an austere look.NWAD AUSTERE.2

    2. Sour; harsh; rough to the taste; applied to things; as austere fruit, or wine.NWAD AUSTERE.3

    AUSTERELY, adv. Severely; rigidly; harshly.


    1. Severity in manners; harshness; austerity.NWAD AUSTERENESS.2

    2. Roughness in taste.NWAD AUSTERENESS.3

    AUSTERITY, n. [L. austeritas.] Severity of manners or life; rigor; strictness; harsh discipline. It is particularly applied to the mortifications of a monastic life, which are called austerities.

    AUSTRAL, a. [L. australis, from auster, the south wind, or south.]

    Southern; lying or being in the south; as austral land; austral signs.NWAD AUSTRAL.2

    AUSTRALASIA, n. [austral and Asia.] A name given to the countries situated to the south of Asia; comprehending New Holland, New Guinea, New Zealand, etc.

    AUSTRIAN, a. [from Austria. This word is formed with the Latin termination, ia, country.]

    Pertaining to Austria, a circle or district of Germany, and an empire, lying on the Danube north of the gulf of Venice.NWAD AUSTRIAN.2

    AUSTRIAN, n. A native of Austria.

    AUSTRINE, a. [L. austrinus, from auster, south.]

    South; southerly; southern.NWAD AUSTRINE.2

    AUSTROMANCY, n. [from auster, the south wind, and Gr. divination.]

    Soothsaying, or prediction of future events, from observations of the winds.NWAD AUSTROMANCY.2

    Auterfoits, a word composed of the French autre, another, and foits, fois, time, introduced into law language, under the Norman princes of England. It signifies, at another time, formerly; as auterfoits acquit, auterfoits attaint, auterfoits convict, formerly acquitted, attainted or convicted, which being specially pleaded, is a bar to a second prosecution for the same offense.NWAD AUSTROMANCY.3

    AUTHENTIC, AUTHENTICAL, a. [Low L. authenticus, from the Gr. from an author or maker; one who does any thing by his own right; also one who kills himself. The first syllable is from Gr. which is probably from the root of author, auctor; and the sense of self-murderer seems to indicate that the other constituent of the word is from Gr. to kill, but the primary sense of which is, to strike, to drive or thrust with the hand, etc. In the word before us, the sense is to throw, or to set; hence authentic is set, fixed, made or made certain by the author, by one’s own self.]

    1. Having a genuine original or authority, in opposition to that which is false, fictitious, or counterfeit; being what it purports to be; genuine; true; applied to things; as an authentic paper or register.NWAD AUTHENTIC.2

    2. Of approved authority; as an authentic writer.NWAD AUTHENTIC.3

    AUTHENTICALLY, adv. In an authentic manner; with the requisite or genuine authority.

    AUTHENTICALNESS, n. The quality of being authentic; genuineness; the quality of being of good authority; authenticity.

    [The latter word is generally used.]NWAD AUTHENTICALNESS.2

    AUTHENTICATE, v.t. To render authentic; to give authority to, by the proof, attestation, or formalities, required by law, or sufficient to entitle to credit.

    The king serves only as a notary to authenticate the choice of judges.NWAD AUTHENTICATE.2

    AUTHENTICATED, pp. Rendered authentic; having received the forms which prove genuineness.

    AUTHENTICATING, ppr. Giving authority by the necessary signature, seal, attestation or other forms.

    AUTHENTICATION, n. The act of authenticating; the giving of authority by the necessary formalities.

    AUTHENTICITY, n. Genuineness; the quality of being of genuine original; as the authenticity of the scriptures.

    AUTHENTICNESS, n. Authenticity. [Rarely used.]

    AUTHOR, n. [L. auctor. The Latin word is from the root of augeo, to increase, or cause to enlarge. The primary sense is one who brings or causes to come forth.]

    1. One who produces, creates, or brings into being; as, God is the author of the Universe.NWAD AUTHOR.2

    2. The beginner, former, or first mover of any thing; hence, the efficient cause of a thing. It is appropriately applied to one who composes or writes a book, or original work, and in a more general sense, to one whose occupation is to compose and write books; opposed to compiler or translator.NWAD AUTHOR.3

    AUTHOR, v.t. To occasion; to effect. [Not used.]

    AUTHORESS, n. A female author.


    1. Having due authority.NWAD AUTHORITATIVE.2

    2. Having an air of authority; positive; peremptory.NWAD AUTHORITATIVE.3

    AUTHORITATIVELY, adv. In an authoritative manner; with a show of authority; with due authority.

    AUTHORITATIVENESS, n. The quality of being authoritative; an acting by authority; authoritative appearance.

    AUTHORITY, n. [L. auctoritas.]

    1. Legal power, or a right to command or to act; as the authority of a prince over subjects, and of parents over children. Power; rule; sway.NWAD AUTHORITY.2

    2. The power derived from opinion, respect or esteem; influence of character or office; credit; as the authority of age or example, which is submitted to or respected, in some measure, as a law, or rule of action. That which is claimed in justification or support of opinions and measures.NWAD AUTHORITY.3

    3. Testimony; witness; or the person who testifies; as, the Gospels or the evangelists are our authorities for the miracles of Christ.NWAD AUTHORITY.4

    4. Weight of testimony; credibility; as a historian of no authority.NWAD AUTHORITY.5

    5. Weight of character; respectability; dignity; as a magistrate of great authority in the city.NWAD AUTHORITY.6

    6. Warrant; order; permission.NWAD AUTHORITY.7

    By what authority dost thou these things. Matthew 21:23; Acts 9:14.NWAD AUTHORITY.8

    7. Precedents, decisions of a court, official declarations, respectable opinions and says, also the books that contain them, are call authorities, as they influence the opinions of others; and in law, the decisions of supreme courts have a binding force upon inferior courts, and are called authorities.NWAD AUTHORITY.9

    8. Government; the persons or the body exercising power or command; as the local authorities of the states.NWAD AUTHORITY.10

    In Connecticut, the justices of the peace are denominated the civil authority.NWAD AUTHORITY.11

    AUTHORIZATION, n. The act of giving authority, or legal power; establishment by authority.

    AUTHORIZE, v.t.

    1. To give authority, warrant or legal power to; to give a right to act; to empower; as, to authorize commissioners to settle the boundary of the state.NWAD AUTHORIZE.2

    2. To make legal; as, to authorize a marriage.NWAD AUTHORIZE.3

    3. To establish by authority, as by usage, or public opinion; as an authorized idiom of language.NWAD AUTHORIZE.4

    4. To give authority, credit or reputation to; as to authorize a report, or opinion.NWAD AUTHORIZE.5

    5. To justify; to support as right. Suppress desires which reason does not authorize.NWAD AUTHORIZE.6

    AUTHORIZED, pp. Warranted by right; supported by authority; derived from legal or proper authority; having power or authority.

    AUTHORIZING, ppr. Giving authority to, or legal power, credit, or permission.

    AUTHORSHIP, n. [author and ship.] The quality or state of being an author.

    AUTOBIOGRAPHY, n. [Gr. biography.]

    Biography or memoirs of one’s life written by himself.NWAD AUTOBIOGRAPHY.2

    AUTOCHTHON, n. [Gr.] One who rises or grows out of the earth.

    AUTOCRASY, n. [Gr. self, and power, or to govern, to take or hold.]

    Independent power; supreme, uncontrolled, unlimited authority or right of governing, in a single person.NWAD AUTOCRASY.2



    1. An absolute prince or sovereign; a ruler or monarch who holds and exercises the powers of government by inherent right, not subject to restriction; a title assumed by the Emperors of Russia.NWAD AUTOCRATOR.2

    2. This title was sometimes conferred by the Athenians on their ambassadors and generals, when invested with unlimited powers.NWAD AUTOCRATOR.3

    AUTOCRATIC, AUTOCRATICAL, a. Pertaining to autocracy; absolute; holding independent and unlimited powers of government.

    AUTOCRATRIX, n. A female sovereign, who is independent and absolute; a title given to the Empresses of Russia.

    1. In the Romish church, a solemn day held by the Inquisition, for the punishment of heretics, and the absolution of the innocent accused.NWAD AUTOCRATRIX.2

    2. A sentence given by the Inquisition, and road to a criminal, or heretic, on the scaffold, just before he is executed.NWAD AUTOCRATRIX.3

    3. The session of the court of inquisition.NWAD AUTOCRATRIX.4

    AUTOGRAPH, AUTOGRAPHY, n. [Gr. self, and writing.]

    A person’s own hand writing; an original manuscript.NWAD AUTOGRAPH.2

    AUTOGRAPHIC, AUTOGRAPHICAL, a. Pertaining to an autograph, or one’s own hand writing.

    AUTOMALITE, n. A mineral called by Hauy, spinelle zincifere. it is classed with the spinel ruby. it occurs imbedded in talcky slate; the color, a dark green. It is crystallized in regular octahedrons, or in tetrahedrons with truncated angles. It is harder than quartz, but not so hard as spinel. It is sometimes called gahnite, from Gahn, its discoverer.

    AUTOMATH, n. [Gr. to learn.] One who is self taught.


    1. Belonging to an automation; having the power of moving itself; mechanical.NWAD AUTOMATIC.2

    2. Not voluntary; not depending on the will. Dr. Hartley has demonstrated that all our motions are originally automatic, and generally produced by the action of tangible things on the muscular fiber.NWAD AUTOMATIC.3

    AUTOMATION, n. [Gr. self. The Greek plural, automata, is sometimes used; but the regular English plural, automatons, is preferable.]

    A self-moving machine, or one which moves by invisible springs.NWAD AUTOMATION.2

    AUTOMATOUS, a. Having in itself the power of motion.

    AUTONOMOUS, a. [Infra.] Independent in government; having the right of self government.

    AUTONOMY, n. [Gr. self, and law, rule.]

    This word is rarely used. It signifies the power or right of self government, whether in a city which elects its own magistrates and makes its own laws, or in an individual who lives according to his own will.NWAD AUTONOMY.2

    AUTOPSY, n. [Gr. self, and sight.]

    Personal observation; ocular view.NWAD AUTOPSY.2

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